VAL D’OR, Qc – The City of Val-d’Or withdraws any notion of canine breed – such as pit bull and bull terrier – in its regulation on potentially dangerous animals. The municipal council thus ties in with the Law aimed at promoting the protection of people by setting up a framework for dogs, adopted on March 3 by the National Assembly. The by-law of the City of Val-d’Or therefore provides that dogs of the pit bull and bull terrier breed are once again admitted to its territory, and rather refers to danger factors.
From now on, any dog weighing more than 20 kg must be kept “by a leash, halter or harness” in public places. The municipal by-law also stipulates that any dog that has bitten a person must be evaluated by a veterinarian or an expert in canine behavior, to know whether the dog in question will be euthanized or not. In addition, veterinarians and doctors must report any bite to the competent authorities. The regulations also provide clearer definitions of what is a dangerous dog.
Withdrawal of breeds: a good thing, according to the SPCA
Liliane Quesnel, Executive Director of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) of Val-d’Or, learned from the Canadian Press that the regulations were changed. She sees good things and less good things. “When it comes to eliminating breeds from the rules, that’s what we’ve been asking from the start,” said Ms. Quesnel. The dogs that bite here are mainly Huskies, Rottweilers and German Shepherds. I haven’t had a case of pit bulls biting for a very long time. ”
Where the shoe pinches, according to the director of the SPCA of Val-d’Or, is in the evaluation of the danger represented by the animal. “There are very few veterinarians in Quebec who really have proven skills in determining the degree of dangerousness of a dog. There are a bunch of factors to determine following a bite before categorizing a dog as dangerous. To apply this regulation, it will take people trained in animal behavior, and in Abitibi-Témiscamingue, there are not many currently. ”
Several municipalities in Quebec had revised their regulations on dangerous dogs, after the death of Christiane Vadnais, fatally injured by a pit bull in June 2018. In its legislation, the National Assembly gives municipalities some leeway to legislate on the subject.
Text of the Local Journalism Initiative
Michel Ducas, Local Journalism Initiative, The Canadian Press
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